|Name: Kevin Beckers|
|Years of professional experience: 10|
|Started with Photoshop version: I have no idea, it’s been such a long time.|
|Current Position: Senior character artist at Human Alloy|
Meet our very own Kevin Beckers: senior character artist at Human Alloy. The man co-responsible for our models amazing hairdos! Kevin started his career as a 3D artist about ten years ago. In his spare time he makes amazing 3D animation characters using his alterego: Tycane3d.
What do you love most about being a 3D artist?
Kevin: “The ability to express an amazingly wide range of creativity with great flexibility. The fact that I can create anything I can imagine, from a car, to a tall building, a huge dragon or an anatomically correct human being and everything in between. And then also have the possibility to animate my creation into a short movie, turn it into a real world statue, or into a nice piece for on my wall.”
How did you become a 3D artist?
Kevin: “As a young kid I was always into drawing: Revell model-kits and lego’s. So I always had an affinity for creating stuff. I also used to play around with Kid-pix on the Mac a lot. I would create the top part of something supposed to be a tank, and then use the marque selection tool to drag a square under it, those where the tracks. Since the selection line’s sections move, I considered it a moving tank and would show it to my dad. My first animations! I was really young ha ha ha ?
Then around my 16th, I was messing around on a friends computer and stumbled across a program called Raydream (… still a mystery why he had that), but after playing around with it for an hour I was hooked on 3D. Being able to change materials, creating lights, rotating, colors, shadows, yeah that was it for me.
From there on out I would graduate into other software like Bryce, Truespace, Rhino3d, Lightwave, anything I could get my hands on. Then eventually the good stuff that stuck: Max and Maya.
Although I never thought it would turn into a career until much later.”
At Human Alloy you specialize in digital hair, can you share a bit more about this?
Kevin: “What makes the digital hair unique is that almost no other companies do it or do it right. It’s a lot of work and difficult, but it adds so much – especially for models that are used in interior shots.
We have several production proven software packages used in movies and video games to create the hair. We use the photos of the scans as a reference from all angles, and try to match the cg hair as close as possible. After that, we use that hairstyle to create a less resource intense, videogame style version of that same hairdo. Mainly for when people would like to populate a large scene with a large amount of our models, without breaking their computers that is.”
Which of your designs are you most proud of and why?
Kevin: “For Human Alloy, I really like all the Paul Jan models. His hair is random yet styled. Quite happy how that one turned out. Same goes for Maud with her double braids (I had to learn how to braid hair for that one!).
As for my published personal work, I like Rock D’s cat and Alister Azimuth a lot as they are nice, complete and professional looking.”
What most important lesson would you like to share with starting 3D artists?
Kevin: “Keep at it, there is no short-cut to becoming a good 3D artist. Learn to be critical and learn to really look. Learn – and take criticism – from actual (3D) artists. Having your mom and non-artist friends saying ‘you should work at pixar!’, doesn’t count. And: embrace the grind, because creating a nice piece takes a lot of (often tedious) work.”
Who are your heroes in this industry and why?
Kevin: “I don’t have specific individual heroes. I like some teams that do amazing work. For instance, I love the art from League of Legends even though I personally don’t play their games. Also Blizzard has some amazing work and Respawn’s Titanfall Art, the crew behind Dishonored, too many to mention. There are so many things I like and I hope to create personal pieces based on the designs of all of them.
What do like about working at Human Alloy and what would you like to see in the future?
Kevin: “I love it whenever clients send us images of their work and seeing the models being placed into really nice pieces. You see Andres chilling on the couch. Or it shows an amazing penthouse restaurant with Karen having a date with Darion and it looks natural, using all the extra assets we deliver to make the models their own. I think eventually this is eventually ‘why we do it’.
As for what I would like in the future, it would be amazing of course to have really nice looking 3D people models with clothes that actually dynamically move, but currently the software/hardware isn’t up to par for that. On a more realistic note, I would love to see themes, like sports or services or something, so having a bunch of different sports represented in one theme. Or professions, like waitress(es), cleaners, all in their own themed package.”